On March 4, 1865, at the close of his second inaugural address, President Abraham Lincoln said:
“With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation’s wounds, to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.”
Lincoln’s words provided the basis to which many government agencies and Veteran Service Organizations would frame the services provided to those who had served. And it was because of these words, and their significance in the years since they were spoken, that the Friars Club created an award designed to recognize individuals and corporations that support Veterans and their families– and named it the Lincoln Award.
According to information found on www.theLincolnAwards.org, the awards are specifically designed to recognize “outstanding achievement and excellence in providing opportunities and support to our nation’s Veterans and military families.”
There are ten categories for the awards. The following are the 2015 winners, the category in which they received the award, and a brief description as to why they are being recognized:
Justin Constantine: Veteran: Constantine is a Marine Corps Veteran who was severely wounded in Iraq when a sniper shot him in the head, and now advocates and raises funds for Veterans in distress.
Ken Fisher: Citizen: Fisher is the CEO of the Fisher House Foundation, which provides housing for families of hospitalized military personnel and Veterans.
Jackie Garrick: Public Service: Garrick is a Veteran and social worker who has advocated for treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder.
Dean Kamen: Medical & Science: Kamen is the inventor of the Segway and the “Star Wars” inspired bionic arm. Kamen is being recognized for his contribution to advances in prosthetics for Veteran amputees.
Britnee Kinard: Caregiver: Kinard is a caregiver for her Veteran husband, and also assists other Veterans and disabled children with the costs of owning service animals.
Bruce Springsteen: Entertainer: For decades “The Boss” has been playing concerts and participating in fundraising events that benefit the military and Veteran communities.
Kayla Williams: Artistic: Williams is an Army Veteran who is being recognized for portraying Veterans through her writing. Her books include: “Love My Rifle More than You: Young and Female in the U.S. Army” (2006) and ‘Plenty of Time When We Get Home: Love & Recovery in the Aftermath of War” (2014)
Dick Young: Standard Bearer: A retired Navy Admiral, Young, 82, is being recognized for his lifetime of exemplary selfless service in the Navy and as a volunteer.
Team Rubicon: Non-Profit Citizen: Team Rubicon is being recognized for providing opportunities and services to Veterans.
Walmart: Corporate Citizen: Walmart is being recognized due to a hiring initiative that helped 100,000 Veterans and 150,000 Veteran family and military family members obtain employment within their corporation.
The awards show was filmed on January 7, 2015 at the Kennedy Center, as part of a large event called: “The Lincoln Awards: A Concert for Veterans and the Military Family.” The show will be broadcasted on PBS in May.
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Military Connection: Lincoln Awards Honor Those Who Support Vets: By Debbie Gregory